Companion Planting

Some of us on the fourth floor like to garden (some of us…not so much). Since we’re just learning to stretch our green thumbs, we thought we’d share some handy tips we learned recently about how to get the most out of a little plot of land. Let’s face it – in the city, we don’t exactly have one acre gardens, so every square inch counts.

 Even this tiny little pot can produce some tasty plants! Image source.

By planting certain plants together, you can help fend off pesky little bugs, attract helpful ones (like bees) and even help other plants grow better. Cool, right? It’s called companion planting. If you’re into having your own mini garden of Eden this summer, read on.  
Instead of using pesticides and herbicides to kill of harmful pests, there are easy ways to do so naturally. Better for the ground, and better for us, especially if the plants are bearing fruit or veggies. 
Planting marigolds around the perimeter of your garden will keep away beetles. They’re called the “wonder drug” of the plant world, producing a natural pesticide in their roots, which helps out almost any other plant. Plus, they’re pretty and will keep cats away from your plants too.

These lovely blooms look pretty and will make your garden better. Image source.
Often, two veggies planted side-by-side will help each other grow, resulting in more tasty eats for you. Planting asparagus, tomatoes and carrots next to each other is a good thing – asparagus comes in early (like, now) and in the meantime, tomatoes and carrots are growing away. By the time you are finished enjoying the little green spears, the tomatoes and carrots are next up on your plate. Plus, tomatoes help keep away the asparagus beetle. 

Beans are a bit of a super plant – they help out a ton of different veggies and herbs, because they attract nitrogen-fighting bacteria, which helps balance the amount of this element (too much is bad for your plants). Try planting them next to strawberries, cucumbers, lettuce and a whole host of herbs. 

 Beanstalks aren’t just good for Jack – tasty & helpful. Image source.
Speaking of herbs, these flavourful plants are also natural buddies with lots of plants. Basil and tomatoes make each other taste better, and dill, coriander, chives, rosemary and lots of others help out tons of different plants. 

 Herb gardens rock. Image source.

Basically, the more varieties of tasty herbs and vegetables you plant, the better your garden will be, and the tastier your meals. Enjoy.